Occur inshore in summer, but at least some moving into deeper waters from October (Mississippi Delta area). Feed in dense schools, filtering phytoplankton, but probably also feed at the bottom. Apparently breed in winter (October to February, with a peak in January). Salinity tolerance range from 0.1-60 ppt, but the commercial catch is mostly from 5.0-24 ppt. Marketed fresh, salted or canned. Mainly used as source of fish oil; also as fish meal (Ref. 188). Isopod is found in the mouth (Ref. 37032).